Courier Life’s

Cold comfort! Guided winter walk keeps the doldrums at bay

Brooklyn Daily
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Shake off those winter blues — and find inspiration for the New Year — on a guided, open-air jaunt through the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.

On Sunday, Jan. 8, join psychotherapist Lynne Spevack as she leads sluggish souls past colorful berry bushes, rustling grasses, and birds feasting on crabapples for a heavy dose of contemplation.

The hour-long tour is part of Spevack’s winter series that brings people out into the cold to keep the doldrums at bay.

“Many people are feeling very slow — they hibernate and overeat this time of year,” said Spevack, a 20-year volunteer at the Prospect Heights garden. “Going for a walk outdoors — even if it’s raining or overcast — will lift your mood and energy level.”

Spevack will give tips on getting enough sleep, exercise, vitamins and natural daylight, while looking for rabbit tracks among the frosty evergreens. You could call it self-help for the price of a museum admission.

Every year, the Botanic Garden’s winter walks series starts with a tour of fall colors in November, and ends in March with guests tiptoeing through spring flowers.

“This is really good for anybody — and it’s kid-friendly!” Spevack said. “Just a walk around the garden is enough to perk people up.”

Winter walk at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden [1000 Washington Ave. at Montgomery Street in Prospect Heights, (718) 623-7200], Jan. 8, 1 pm. Free with museum admission, which is $10 for adults. For info, visit

Reach Kate Briquelet at or by calling her at (718) 260-2511.

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Reader Feedback

Joan M. from Old Mill Basin says:
I believe that walking through Brooklyn Botanic Garden at any time of the year has its rewards, for BBG is truly an oasis, a place that stimulates ones ears, eyes...and nose too. My favorite time to walk through is when and where there are fewer folks around--that's when I see ducks, and sometimes rabbits--leisurely walking to and fro.
Once, when I was sitting reading a book in the Shakespeare Garden, where all the foliage is devoted to plants mentioned by The Bard, I was astonished to see a hummingbird. It fluttered right above my head. How thrilling for this city gal!
Another time I was in the beautiful glass-covered Palm House attending a Volunteers' luncheon when I looked out the large window and saw a huge white bird sitting on a tree branch. I stood up and drew everyone's attention to that radiant creature, and all were mesmerized by what I later learned was a heron, a rarity seen at the Garden!
Yes, I highly recommend taking a winter walk through Brooklyn Botanic Garden--or a spring, or a summer, or an autumn walk too, for that matter. And I also recommend one becoming a Volunteer at BBG. One can work with the gardeners, or when there are events, or as garden guides (for adults and/or children's classes), or at the Visitors' Center, etc. The choices are endless, and the people one meets there are all of the same calibre--all enjoy the cleanliness, the friendliness, and the flora that BBG offers.
Jan. 3, 2012, 9:46 pm

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